by Matthew Sterne
on September 13, 2010
“Sleeping with prostitutes is like making your cat dance with you on its hind legs. You know it’s wrong, but you try to convince yourself that they’re enjoying it as well.” Jimmy Carr
Richard and I, dapper gentlemen that we are, arrived at the V&A Waterfront on a balmy winter’s evening. Terrific, warm sunshine has been the order of this winter. If it wasn’t for our guts we’d have certainly had a spring in our steps. Richard is the GM at MannaBay and is on the hunt for restaurants to recommend to guests. He’s going to be hard pushed to find something better to recommend to a first time visitor to Cape Town…
The setting is sublime – vivid colours, yachty totty, sea air and Table Mountain looming in the background. It’s a big restaurant – part of the Caviar Group which includes Blonde and Beluga, but it certainly beats its brethren for location, especially if you get a table in the ample outdoor area which is a must at lunch time. White umbrellas and matching table cloths, elegantly dressed waiters and polished cutlery, there’s a lot of sex appeal here. Inside, dark and opulent browns compliment the magnificent glass ‘wine wall’ which houses over 3000 bottles of wine. Because it’s in the V&A Waterfront however, I think a lot of people tend to assume that it’s bound to be a tourist trap – they worry that it’s going to be a triumph of style over substance – ordinary food at extraordinary prices. Sevruga has a similar allure to a Soho sex shop. People want to go in, but they know it’s not a good idea…
Well let the Horny Grazer be your green light in the red light district. Leave your scepticism at the door – the food is good, the service is polished and the portions are generous.
I began with the wild mushroom tortellini served with wilted rocket, a tomato concassé and white truffle foam. Sounds fussy, but it was delicious – tasty and perfectly cooked. GM had the crayfish tian which was light and refreshing if a little heavy on the mayonnaise.
Sevruga specialises in seafood – for main course, you need look no further than the salmon wellington which is hearty and delicious. It’s a large portion and slightly clumsily presented on a bed of mash, but the pastry was cooked to perfection while the salmon was succulent. We ordered a few cheeky prawns and langoustines on the side – a selection of Queens, Langoustines and Tiger Giants. You have to order a Tiger Giant for the sheer novelty – these enormous sea critters have a much firmer meat than regular prawns while the langoustines offer (well they don’t really offer it, we kind of just kill them and take it) a much sweeter meat. Unlike prawns, langoustines are not segmented, so you get meat all the way from the head to the tail. As ever watching his waistline, GM opted for the Lindt chocolate Springbok served with pommes cocottes, wild mushrooms and a chocolate & port jus. Please consult your physician before ordering this devilishly delicious dish.
Unsated, we shared the chocolate fondant. It’s hard to get a fondant wrong and really all comes down to the quality of the chocolate – this one was good, but curiously presented at one end of a chocolate skid mark on a rectangular plate.
Prices are on the steep side, but the menu is nicely varied with something to suit every wallet – they also have a fantastic sushi menu and offer half price sushi daily between 14pm and 17pm.
Sevruga is a great restaurant in a fab location and there is no reason why locals shouldn’t enjoy it as much as our overseas visitors. Just remember to book if you want to sit outside.
Shop 4, Quay 5, V&A Waterfront, Cape Town
+27 (0)21 421 5134